Despite the global economic recession, wind turbine deployment activity remains strong, and installations will represent a $153 billion global industry by 2017, up from $77 billion in 2011, according to a new report from Pike Research.
From the period between 2011 and 2017, global cumulative investment in new wind power capacity will total $820 billion, the firm adds.
Over that same period, total wind generation capacity, including both onshore and offshore projects, will increase from 235.8 GW in 2011 to 562.9 GW in 2017.
‘Although growth rates of new wind installations will fall short of the industry's boom period, cumulative wind power capacity will grow steadily over the next six years,’ says senior analyst Peter Asmus. "Despite the challenging market conditions for the wind energy industry, this is a dynamic time for innovation in the market, as vendors are pushing turbines to sizes never before thought practical or economical."
At the highest level, three major markets will continue to drive the global wind industry: Asia Pacific, dominated by China and, to a lesser extent, India; Europe, led by Germany and Spain; and North America, led by the U.S.
In addition, the top 10 wind manufacturers supplied 79% of the wind turbines installed worldwide in 2010 – a significant drop from 88% only two years before. The majority of these new entrants are based in China, the report notes.
At the same time, numerous high-level mergers and acquisitions have resulted in more dynamic, vertically integrated wind turbine manufacturing companies. Increasingly, manufacturers are acquiring wind farm development companies as a strategy for ensuring markets for their turbines, the firm adds.